My first introduction to kettlebell training came in September of 2007 via Pavel's "Enter the Kettlebell." With ETK style training I noticed distinct hypertophy of my shoulder region but not a lot happening to my rather overdeveloped tummy - and I don't mean muscles. When I started GS style training (longer sets with lighter weight) I noticed that some of the initial hypertrophy dropped away but I did notice that I was becoming generally leaner. Since starting Scott Sonnon's 4x7 protocol something interesting is happening.
The 4x7 protocol in a (very small) nutshell is based on 4 day cycles that include a no intensity day (joint mobility), low intensity day (joint work and yoga), moderate intensity (which is mainly lower rep training) and a high intensity day (which is based on classic GS long sets). Sinced starting this protocol I have noticed pronounced muscle growth in my shoulder, traps, delts and biceps. My abs also became more streamlined (without any diet changes). I am not sure why this is happening but there is clearly something about the 4x7 protocol that makes a significant impact not only on body comp but also on the ability to achieve PR's in your training.
Although my training has been a bit erratic over the past two weeks I have noticed distinct changes in my body composition as well as my ability to put in some pretty intense training sessions. Scott seems to have some kind of remarkable genius when it comes to figuring out protocols that really work. The most important part for me (being 38 years old) is that I don't feel that I'm harming my body in any way even when I train hard.
I'll be posting some more specifics on my training experiences and the changes in both body comp and general well-being / fitness in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!